The Wire


New book and concert series celebrate Can's 50th anniversary

The Wire's Rob Young has penned a new biography of the legendary rock outfit while London’s Barbican host The Can Project

To celebrate Can’s 50th anniversary, which falls in October 2017, Faber & Faber are publishing a new book devoted to the Cologne rock legends. The book will be split into two volumes – one is the first complete authorised biography of the band by The Wire’s Rob Young, and the other is a collage of thoughts, visuals and interviews written and collated by Irmin Schmidt and former Electronic Beats Editor Max Dax.

In April 2017 London’s Barbican will host The Can Project, featuring Irmin Schmidt with London Symphony Orchestra/Thurston Moore and special guests. The show will be preceded by a Q&A with Rob Young, who will also read from the book, and there will also be a screening of Can’s 1972 performance at the Cologne Sporthalle on 8 April, 7.30pm.

Sons D'Hiver jazz and improv festival returns for its 26th edition

Happening just outside of Paris, the festival features Roscoe Mitchell Sextet, Wadada Leo Smith, Archie Shepp and more

The 26th edition of Sons D’Hiver festival opens on 13 January. Translating as Sounds Of Winter, the annual jazz and improv festival will be held at various venues in Val-de-Marne just outside Paris. The programme includes Sylvaine Helary & Dan Weiss, Wadada Leo Smith & Vijay Iyer, Roscoe Mitchell Sextet paying tribute to John Coltrane, Aron Ottignon Trio, Craig Taborn, Archie Shepp playing Sidney Bechet, and more.

Sons d'hiver runs from 13 January–5 February. Tickets are on sale now.

Launch for Salomé Voegelin and Thomas Gardner’s new sound art book

David Toop and Claudia Molitor are among the featured contributors in the forthcoming book Colloquium: Sound Art–Music

The new Zero Books publication Colloquium: Sound Art–Music will be launched in February. Edited by Wire contributor Salomé Voegelin and Thomas Gardner, it features contributions from David Toop, Volkmar Klien, Aura Satz, Leigh Landy, Cathy Lane, Simon Emmerson, Claudia Molitor, Kathy Hinde, and others. The book materialised out of a debate about the relationship between sound art and music, which took place at London College of Communication in 2012. The publication aims to “open up the continuum between concert hall and gallery space, between record collection, radio, sound and the everyday”. The launch will take place at LCC on 1 February, 7pm.

Jennifer Walshe and Simon Bainbridge win two new British Composer awards

The new category celebrates artists and composers’ entire careers as opposed to an individual work

Jennifer Walshe and Simon Bainbridge have been recognised as two of the most innovative and inspiring contemporary composers in the UK at the British Composer Awards 2016. Walshe won the British Composer Award for Innovation, in “recognition of her lifelong dedication to questioning and challenging the status quo through music and performance”. And Bainbridge received the British Composer Award for Inspiration. Both are new categories that celebrate the entire musical career of those chosen as opposed to a single piece of work.

Nuit D'Hiver celebrates winter in Marseille

The French festival of experimental music hosts its 14th edition

Marseille’s festival Nuit D'Hiver is about to happen at various venues across the city. The line-up for the eight day event includes Claudio Bettinelli, Laure Bonomo, Chris Cutler, Freddy Eichelberger, Paul Elwood, Sebastian Gramss, Sara Haefeli, Heather Leigh, Kaffe Matthews, My Cat Is An Alien with Joëlle Vinciarelli, Mats Gustafsson with Dieb13, Year Of No Light and others.

Organised by GRIM, a Marseille based network that puts on concerts, workshops and artist in residence projects, Nuit D’Hiver runs from 14–21 December.

It’s Been Hell: 20 Years Of Lo Recordings

East London record label celebrates 20 years with a new compilation

To mark 20 years in action, the East London record label Lo Recordings has released a 20 track compilation. Called It’s Been Hell: 20 Years Of Lo Recordings, the release digs deep into the label's back catalogue to uncover originals and remixes from artists like Grimes, Aphex Twin, Luke Vibert, Squarepusher, The Chap, Black Devil Disco Club, and many others.

Over time, this genre-broad label has released 150 records as well as setting up countless parties and exhibitions. “It’s Been Hell…really? Well there have been hellish times but it’s also been a pleasure,” reflects Lo’s founder Jon Tye. “So much of it and so much goodness. Starting off in a basement underneath Spitalfields Market at a time when there was no email – or at least not for me – and the fax machine was king. Thurston Moore said I could hassle him, and so I did – by fax. [Pere Ubu’s] David Thomas would send a fax saying ‘WUZ UP!?’ Nothing else. Aphex Twin said ‘I’ve done the mix shall I bring it over?’ And so he did with Squarepusher in tow.”

Upstairs from the studio was a venue called The Spritz where Tye, Tony Morley and The Wire’s Rob Young ran the Scratch Club for two and a half years​. It saw performances from Derek Bailey, Cornershop, Silver Apples, Talvin Singh & Squarepusher, Lol Coxhill, Eddie Prévost and Andy Weatherall, with its punters including David Bowie.

“This compilation in no way captures the whole journey, just a few snaps along the way,” Tye confirms.

The two-disc set is out now in CD and digital formats.

David Keenan to launch his novel with performances from Bruce Russell and Richard Youngs

The Wire writer celebrates the publication of his first novel with a party night of music, literature and poetry called Go Ahead And Drop The Bomb

The UK launch of David Keenan's debut novel This Is Memorial Device will take place on February 2017. The mega event will feature appearances from The Dead C's Bruce Russell, Richard Youngs, Michael Pederson (co-founder of the literary night and record label Neu! Reekie!), a DJ set from Andrew Weatherall and, of course, David reading extracts from his book.

Called This is Memorial Device, it’s a fictionalised account of the post-punk era in Airdrie, Scotland – “a love letter to the small towns of Lanarkshire in the west of Scotland in the late 1970s and early 80s”, says David.

The launch will take place on 8 February at London The Social, 7pm. Tickets are on sale now, costing £8. The book will be published by Faber.

Four days of glorious alternative sounds across Glasgow promised for April

Ashley Paul is one of the artists so far confirmed to appear at Counterflows 2017

Glasgow's Counterflows festival have set the ball rolling for their 2017 edition. Taking place across the city (while promising “next-to-no scheduling clashes!”), artists confirmed include Ashley Paul, Farmers Manual, Glorias Navales, The Modern Institute, Svitlana Nianio, Olimpia Splendid, Takahiro Kawaguchi & Utah Kawasaki, Mark Ernestus' Ndagga Rhythm Force and Midori Takada.

The artists, say the festival organisers, are “bound together by their questioning spirit and refusal of easy categorisation. [...] We believe that the underground belongs to a myriad of voices and is best engaged with when we come together, share ideas, break down borders, challenge hierarchies and push boundaries.”
Counterflows, they add, “hopes to create a space for you to enjoy the music that feels inclusive, anti-elitist and fun, and hopefully in some way feels like an extension of the activity and community at the heart of Glasgow's own music/art scene(s)”.

The final programme will include performances, specially commissioned projects, one-off collaborations, intimate shows, clubnights and talks. And Counterflows promise some surprises too.

Counterflows will take place between 6–9 April. Tickets are on sale now.

Street in Coventry to be named after Delia Derbyshire

BBC Radiophonic Workshop’s electronic music pioneer gets honoured with a street named after her

As reported by Resident Advisor, a Coventry street has been named after the electronic music pioneer Delia Derbyshire. The composer of the Doctor Who theme was born in Coventry on 5 May 1937 and started work at the BBC Radiophonic Workshop in April 1962. Now, just over 15 years after her death in July 2001, her memory has been enshrined in the street name Derbyshire Way in Stoke Heath, Coventry.

Pete Chambers BEM, director of The Coventry Music Museum said: "Originally it was to be named Derbyshire Road, but I suggested ‘Way’ instead, so it gave a double meaning, as Delia was a genius and strong personality and really did do things in her own way."

Rewire announce first wave of artists for next year's edition

Artists confirmed so far in Rewire’s first line–up announcement for their 17th edition include Arca & Jesse Kanda, Jameszoo Quartet, Gaika, Sarathy Korwar, Cloud Becomes Your Hand, Reckonwrong, and more

Dutch experimental music festival Rewire has revealed the first list of artists so far confirmed for its 17th edition coming up in spring. The full programme, adding some 75 more artists, talks, workshops and screenings, id still to be announced.

Happening in The Hague, it features Reckonwrong’s live world premiere, plus various Dutch premieres of works from Arca & Jesse Kanda, SUMS aka Kangding Ray & Barry Burns, Daniel Wohl with Slagwerk Den Haag & Matangi Quartet presenting their Holographic, Croatian Amor presenting Love Means Taking Action live audio-visual set, Trigger plays John Zorn’s Bagatelles. The line-up so far confirmed includes Lorenzo Senni, Pharmakon, Jameszoo Quartet, Gaika, Moor Mother, Zs, Horse Lords, Tirzah, Sarathy Korwar, Ryan Teague Ensemble and more.

Rewire takes place between 31 March–2 April across the city of Den Haag, and early bird passes are available now up until 1 December. After that date only standard price full passes and day tickets will be on sale. The 2015 edition was reviewed by Chris Woolfrey for The Wire 377. Subscribers can read that over at Exact Editions.